Vanderbilt HC Derek Mason Talks About Facing Alabama in 2017
Alabama and Vanderbilt are set to play each other in the regular season for the first time since 2011 and only the second time of the Nick Saban era.
The last time the Tide and Commodores met - a 34-0 win for Alabama in Tuscaloosa - Saban had only won a single national championship with the Crimson Tide. Three titles later, the two programs will face each other again in Nashville on September 23.
It seems like a tall task for a Vanderbilt team that's won just five conference games in three seasons to pull an upset over the reigning SEC champ, but head coach Derek Mason said his team will be prepared when the time comes.
"I don't fear anybody, and our team as well," Mason said at SEC Media Days. "So when we line up to play Alabama, we got to line up to play Alabama. We have three other opponents, starting with MTSU. That's where we sit today, and that's where we'll be. When we face Alabama, we're going to be ready to play."
Don't mistake that confidence for arrogance, though. Mason had plenty of praise for what Saban's been able to accomplish at Alabama.
"I take this thing one day at a time. But in speaking about Coach Saban and his football team, there's nobody right now that's doing it better, you know, when you look at longevity of his program, what he's done, how he's built it. He's built it around who he is and how he sees football, and that's extremely important."
Hear everything Mason had to say at SEC Media Days in the video below.